BEST INDIE SONGS - WEEK 30
I remember when Mondays used to suck :(. Now, it's the beginning of the week that I look forward to the most :). Why?! Because it's when I get to bring you the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's Best Indie Songs, duh! That's right, I've finally recovered from the clusterf*ck that was the VMAs nominations (clearly, MTV didn't get the memo that Janelle Monáe is the video artist of the year) in order to get your first day back at work off to the raddest of rad starts! Crank up the office speakers, then, as it's time to shake it in your desk chair this morning to the following tracks from The 1975, YUNGBLUD, Jacob Banks, Unlike Pluto, Twenty One Pilots, and five other favorites!
THE 1975 – LOVE IT IF WE MADE IT
The end of the world is here, but at least we have The 1975 singing to us as Babylon burns. Listen as Matty Healy calls out Trump (“'I moved on her like a bitch!'/Excited to be indicted”), pays tribute to Lil Peep (“Rest in peace Lil Peep/The poetry is in the streets”), touches on racism (“Selling melanin and then suffocate the black men/Start with misdemeanours and we'll make a business out of them”), and more in the stunning post-apocalyptic hymnal “Love If We Made It,” from The 1975's forthcoming album A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships.
YUNGBLUD – MEDICATION
Rock and roll theatrics and socials commentary collide in the latest single from YUNGBLUD. “Welcome to the eyes of someone growing up in a heavily medicated society where reality and drug-induced fantasy is becoming very much intertwined,” says the British artist of “Medication,” the hysterical, technicolor video for which will make you think while also leave you mouthing to your computer screen: “What the F*CK did I just watch?!”
JACOB BANKS – IN THE NAME OF LOVE
Jacob Banks once again reminds us that he's a force of nature on his latest single. Written for the film The Equalizer 2 starring Denzel Washington, “In the Name of Love” is another soulfully raw slice from the British crooner, with Jacob unleashing the kind of vocal performance that could move mountains over a production that calls to mind the Kanye West classic “POWER.”
UNLIKE PLUTO – JOLT
On his new single, Unlike Pluto imagines what it would be like to erase an ex from your memory. While I don't recommend that you go and sign up for an Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind-style procedure any time soon, there's no denying that the Los Angeles producer and singer-songwriter makes the whole idea of forgetting a former lover sound VERY appealing on the earnest banger “JOLT.”
LONTALIUS – THAT INCLUDES YOU
Love is a frequently confusing, and often terrifying, concept. He may not get any closer to cracking the code of the heart on his latest single, but New Zealand artist Lontalius nevertheless makes musical magic out of the vulnerability and fragility that comes from entering into a relationship on the bleepy bloopy brilliance that is “That Includes You.”
TWENTYONEPILOTS – JUMPSUIT
I don't really regard myself as a conspiracist, but even I've been obsessed with reading the fan theories surrounding Twenty One Pilots' forthcoming album Trench. What's Dema?! Who's Clancy?! I HAVE NO IDEA, but as long as the duo continue to bring mythology-soaked rippers like “Jumpsuit,” you can guarantee that I'll be wearing my tin foil hat with pride!
SOCCER MOMMY – SCORPIO RISING
“Scorpio Rising,” from Soccer Mommy's recent debut album Clean, is nothing short of celestial. Written about those summer nights spent making out in the back seat of the car with your high school crush, it has something deeply otherworldly about it. It has something deeply lonely about it, too, as depicted in the song's ethereal video, which sees Sophie Allison walking alone beneath a starry Nashville sky.
HOLYCHILD – WISHING YOU AWAY
From the outside, “Wishing You Away” seems like a party in a box. Despite coming wrapped up in rainbows and unicorns, however, the latest single from HOLYCHILD actually conceals a decidedly dark innards, with lead singer Liz Nistico revealing that the song is about her relationship with her father, who was physically abusive to her mom when she was a child. “It has taken me a long time to come to terms with my past and how it dictates my present. And I'm still working on it,” says Liz. “The song is a cry to my dad.”
THE COUP (FEAT. LAKEITH STANFIELD) – OYAHYTT
Not content with making one of the best films of the year, Sorry to Bother You, The Coup's Boots Riley is out here making one of the best songs, too. Much like the movie that it soundtracks, “OYAHYTT” is a swaggering roller coaster ride from start to finish, with film star Lakeith Stanfield even hopping on board to deliver an effortlessly cool verse of his own.
DYAN – ABSENCE
Following on from their cover of José González's “Cycling Trivialities,” We Are: The Guard favorites DYAN return this Monday with “Absence.” Like a warm wind pouring through an open window on a hot summer's day, there's something replenishing, grounding, and centering about the trio's latest single, which frontwoman Alexis Marsh reveals “is about leaving, but not before inquiring about doubt.”
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Jess Grant is a frustrated writer hailing from London, England. When she isn't tasked with disentangling her thoughts from her brain and putting them on paper, Jess can generally be found listening to The Beatles, or cooking vegetarian food.